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There are few things as enjoyable as being able to comfortably and casually head outside on a beautiful Spring day after experiencing Winter.  For those of us sensitive to cold temperatures, it was a liberating feeling to wear an open lightweight jacket, rather than a full kit of heavy coat and gloves and so on, as we roamed the park Friday afternoon.  Obviously almost everything was still rather brown and barren besides the recovering grass, but there were definitely more signs of the Spring riot to come to be seen if one knows where to look.  One of those signs is the return of Spring birds; I had the distinct pleasure of watching two pairs of Eastern Bluebirds noisily cavorting among the lower branches of Beeches, Maples, Red Oaks, and Bird Cherries.

A pair of Eastern Bluebirds spotted in Visionsong, with the male just below center and the paler female perched upper right of center. Click to view larger.

Another sign of future abundance are buds forming on the tree branches.  The Silver Maples put out their large, reddish-orange buds especially early here in Michigan, making them easy to spot.

Even from the ground, the branches of the Silver Maple appear heavily beaded with its large buds, easily distinguishing it from the bare branches of other trees. Click to view larger.

Spring and Autumn in Michigan have the best range of temperatures, in my opinion: usually not too hot and not too cold.  I mean to take full advantage of Spring’s mildness by spending copious amounts of time outside of the comfortable cages we call houses, businesses, and vehicles.  Welcome, Spring!